For Immediate Release: Wednesday, March 1, 2017
Contact: Doxie A. McCoy, Public Information Officer,
Washington, D.C. -- People’s Counsel for the District of Columbia Sandra Mattavous-Frye has expressed disappointment over the decision by the Public Service Commission (PSC) today to approve an $8 million increase in rates for Washington Gas Light Company (WGL) customers. The Office of the People’s Counsel (OPC) had recommended that the PSC reduce WGL’s request of $19.9 million to just over $161, 000, pointing to WGL’s consistent overspending on its pipe replacement programs.
“OPC successfully made the case for a significant reduction in the gas company’s request. The PSC also accepted our recommendations to: 1) reject WGL's request to implement a Revenue Normalization Adjustment, which would have allowed the company’s automatic recovery of certain expenses, 2) deny its request to recover research and development expenses and 3) deny the requested increase in WGL’s return on equity (profit margin),” said Mattavous-Frye.
“Nonetheless, we take no satisfaction in the fact that the approved increase still means an unjustifiable burden on DC residents. The utility in essence has received a green light to send ratepayers an excessive bill for which they should not be responsible. Washington Gas should not be allowed to pass its rampant cost overruns on to consumers. Unfortunately, the PSC has sent the company a signal that this unreasonable and unfair practice is acceptable.”
OPC will review the PSC approval order closely to determine whether to challenge any of the provisions and file an application for reconsideration.